New, place-based partnership to tackle poverty stigma

We are delighted to announce a partnership with Swansea Council and members of Swansea Poverty Truth Commission (SPTC), hosted by Swansea Council for Voluntary Service (SCVS), to advance understanding of poverty stigma and support public services’ efforts to tackle it.

The partnership follows close collaboration between WCPP and the Swansea Poverty Truth Commission in the development and delivery of our recent workshops to better understand the prevalence and effects of poverty stigma in Wales, and will bring together decision-makers, academics, practitioners, community groups and people with lived experience of poverty. It will also help to inform Swansea Council’s Tackling Poverty Strategy

The aim of our work on poverty stigma to date has been to identify how we, and others, can best support public services to tackle poverty stigma more effectively. A key part of this place-based partnership will be to work together with SPTC and Swansea Council to co-design ways of collaborating that will ensure the project benefits all parties in this important area.

WCPP Senior Research Fellow, Amanda Hill-Dixon said, “We are very much looking forward to continuing our work on poverty stigma with Swansea Council, members of the Swansea Poverty Truth Commission and other experts on this issue.

“Building on ideas that emerged in our recent workshops, we aim to co-design and co-deliver a project to develop evidence-based solutions to poverty stigma in Swansea.

We will learn from lived experiences of poverty stigma locally, gain insight into the role of local public services in both producing and preventing poverty stigma, as well as capturing and building on what’s working well to tackle poverty stigma in the area. “For our part, we can help local partners to understand what research evidence says about tackling poverty stigma, learn from promising practice elsewhere and co-create a local, evidence-based vision and action plan for tackling poverty stigma.”

Swansea Council’s Cabinet Member for Wellbeing Alyson Anthony said: “We are very pleased to be working with the Wales Centre for Public Policy and members of the Swansea Poverty Truth Commission. Through the work of the Commission and the lived experience of the commissioners we have a clearer understanding that the stigma around poverty is a real issue for those experiencing poverty. This is an opportunity for us to explore this further and embed good practice in our work to alleviate poverty.”

Swansea Poverty Truth Commission coordinator, Kay Lemon said, “The Swansea Poverty Truth Commission, the first in Wales, identified stigma as a fundamental issue needing to be addressed.  It creates shame, isolation and impacts on mental health, well-being and access to services.  Public bodies, including schools, have a significant role to play in mitigating the pervasive and divisive narratives which create stigma.  We are delighted that some of our local community commissioners will bring their expertise to this project.”

Read more about our work on poverty stigma in a blog by WCPP Senior Research Fellow Amanda Hill-Dixon and hear directly from Swansea Poverty Truth Commissioners Melvyn Williams and Karen Berrell in a blog following their participation in our Tackling Poverty Stigma workshops.

We are also establishing a Poverty Stigma Insight Network. Find out more here – all are welcome to join our shaping session on June 6.